ACT Absurdity!

ACT. It’s arguably one of the most important yet stressful experiences for a high school student. I can personally attest to the strain of the seemingly impossible test. I took the ACT for the first time on December eighth, and although I can’t say the experience was pleasant, contrary to my prior beliefs, it wasn’t completely horrifying either. Yes, there is plenty of pressure from parents, teachers, and even yourself to do well, but the key is not to let the pressure get to you and not to let the ACT intimidate you. The ACT is not like any other test, so don’t treat it like any other test. Unlike a test you would take in math, ACT doesn’t test your prior knowledge or how intelligent you are. It tests your ability to comprehend new information and manipulate your mind in a clever, but timely fashion. At first, it may seem overwhelming, but not to worry! The ACT is totally doable. You only need to know a few basic rules about grammar and math, the rest is finding ways around the little mind tricks the ACT test makers try to play on you, and, most important of all, practice, practice, PRACTICE! Practice will improve your ACT score more than any amount of knowledge about English, math, or science. Get a practice ACT book and just start doing a section a day. Time is said to be your biggest enemy on this test, but if you can’t get the questions correct in the allotted time, then finishing on time is of no use. So, if you’re just starting out and are worried about the time limit, give yourself ten extra minutes to begin with. Work on accuracy first and slowly work your way to combining accuracy with perfect timing. Just take a deep breath and know that this isn’t anything you can’t do.

Recommended Books:

  • Princeton Review’s 1,296 Practice ACT Questions
  • The Real ACT Prep Guide
  • McGraw Hill’s 10 ACT Practice Tests
  • Barron’s ACT 36: Aiming for the Perfect Score


Role of a Business Analyst

Business analysts (BA) are the change agents helping businesses to improve the efficacy of business processes. They play important role in any type of business – be it finance, banking, insurance, manufacturing, retail, travel or other. While the business analysts are always a wanted bunch, 2012 reports indicate that the demand and compensation for these jobs show a rising trend. With the changing landscape of economy and an estimated project failure rate of more than 60%, businesses have more reason to value the BA role as an attempt to avoid the risk of project failures.

A business analyst’s job is to understand the current business processes, analyze them, elicit the requirements for the revised system from various users, study the pain points of users, research available solutions and options to address those pain points, propose alternate solutions, help the executive management to select a solution, translate the requirements for use with IT system design, manage the changes to the requirements, verify the developed solution and ensure that it effectively meets the needs of the business. Sounds simple?